A defeat in a huge game will always bring out the worst in a section of a club’s supporters and there will be some outrageous hot-takes in the aftermath of Barcelona’s defeat to Real Madrid tonight, but anyone who watched the game will admit something was up with Lionel Messi.
The commentators were pointing out that Real Madrid players were able to stroll away from him, and he didn’t look fit or confident at all when the ball came his way.
There was a huge moment in the second half when he went through on goal but he just looked so slow and Marcelo was able to get back to cover.
He’s been great this season so it has to go down as one bad game rather than a true sign of decline on the biggest stage, but it’s clear that plenty of fans didn’t rate his performance tonight at all:
Man Messi aged right before my eyes. Dusted
— Oris (@_Ortodox) March 1, 2020
No messi love in tonight???Another no show in a big game, Great player without doubt but I’ve seen that non existent performance far too often in recent years
— Bow (@Westpauper) March 1, 2020
— Daniel Hutchings (@dhutchings91) March 1, 2020
Messi so deep in Casemiro’s pocket you’d take out a million bucks in coins and still not reach him.
— Sphamandla Yoko (@SphaYoko) March 1, 2020
Why didn’t Messi play tonight?
— 3mmanuel (@Itswonderboy) March 1, 2020
No creativity upfront, Messi had a bad game, players fucking switched off, no support nothing. Setien really needs to wake up.
— Funmilayo (@Hemhoobee) March 1, 2020
I honestly enjoyed the match. Was on the edge of my seat. At the end it where 2 goals with a lucky touch. I am concerned about our lack off goal scoring ability though. Messi had some bad touches and bad tries on goal. Maybe he is really injured but trying to fight true.
— Michel (@Michel71663414) March 1, 2020
There seems to be something in the suggestions that he’s carrying an injury, but you could also argue that he’s had to carry the team all season so it was always going to catch up with him.
It’s such a shame that Barca are wasting his final great years by putting a poor team around him, so this could be a huge Summer for the club.